Pathogen Project Pathogens Neisseria meningitidis

Pathogen Project Pathogens Neisseria meningitidis -...

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Causative agent: Neisseria meningitidis Category: Bacteria Kingdom: Bacteria Phylum: Proteobacteria Class: Beta Proteobacteria Order: Neisseriales Family: Neisseriaceae Genus: Neisseria Species: meningitidis N. meningitidis is known as the "meningococcus" and one form of the disease it causes is called meningococcemia. Disease: N. meningitidis is the cause of meningococcal meningitis. Many normal individuals may harbor Neisseria meningitidis in the upper respiratory tract. The organism tends to colonize the posterior nasopharynx of humans, and humans are the only known host. Individuals who are colonized are carriers of the pathogen who can transmit disease to non-immune individuals. The bacterium also colonizes the posterior nasopharynx in the early stages of infection prior to invasion of the meninges. Most individuals in close contact with a case of meningococcal meningitis become carriers of the organism. This carrier rate can reach 20 percent of the contact group before the first case is recognized, and may reach as high as 80 percent at the height of an epidemic. In the bloodstream, the bacteria proliferate and adapt to the host environment. Clinical responses are varied, from a benign form to extreme fatal forms. In its most severe form, heightened levels of bacteria in the blood make their way to the meninges of the brain and at such high levels of cytotoxicity, induce inflammation of the meninges. Meningitis can be contagious through casual contact (droplet/airborne). It primarily affects the very young. Disease can result in gram-negative sepas, resulting in extensive tissue damage, which may require amputation of limbs.
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This note was uploaded on 05/11/2011 for the course BIO 31 taught by Professor Silva during the Spring '11 term at Reedley.

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Pathogen Project Pathogens Neisseria meningitidis -...

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